Synergistic effects of glycated chitosan with high-intensity focused ultrasound on suppression of metastases in a syngeneic breast tumor model

Y. L. Chen, C. Y. Wang, F. Y. Yang, B. S. Wang, J. Y. Chen, Liang-ting Lin, J. D. Leu, S. J. Chiu, F. D. Chen, Y. J. Lee, W. R. Chen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Stimulation of the host immune system is crucial in cancer treatment. In particular, nonspecific immunotherapies, when combined with other traditional therapies such as radiation and chemotherapy, may induce immunity against primary and metastatic tumors. In this study, we demonstrate that a novel, non-toxic immunoadjuvant, glycated chitosan (GC), decreases the motility and invasion of mammalian breast cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. Lung metastatic ratios were reduced in 4T1 tumor-bearing mice when intratumoral GC injection was combined with local high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) treatment. We postulate that this treatment modality stimulates the host immune system to combat cancer cells, as macrophage accumulation in tumor lesions was detected after GC-HIFU treatment. In addition, plasma collected from GC-HIFU-treated tumor-bearing mice exhibited tumor-specific cytotoxicity. We also investigated the effect of GC on epithelial-mesenchymal transition-related markers. Our results showed that GC decreased the expression of Twist-1 and Slug, proto-oncogenes commonly implicated in metastasis. Epithelial-cadherin, which is regulated by these genes, was also upregulated. Taken together, our current data suggest that GC alone can reduce cancer cell motility and invasion, whereas GC-HIFU treatment can induce immune responses to suppress tumor metastasis in vivo.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1178
JournalCell Death and Disease
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Epithelial-mesenchymal transition
  • High-intensity focused ultrasound
  • Immunoadjuvant
  • Lung metastasis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research

Cite this